• “This is my first time winning gold and I am motivated to keep going. In Oregon, we had no gold in the race so I wanted to change that narrative in Cali,” Cherotich said.
• “When I placed second at the Kip Keino Classic, I knew that steeplechase was made for me. One day, I want to run like Beatrice Chepkoech and break the world record.”
Newly-crowned World Under-20 3,000m steeplechase champion Faith Cherotich has disclosed she is not resting on her laurels as she targets the 2023 World Cross Country Championships in Bathurst, Australia.
On Friday morning, Cherotich struck the gold medal in a time of 9:16.14 as Ethiopian duo of Sembo Almayew and Meseret Yeshaneh finished second and third in respective times of 9:30.41 and 9:42.02.
“Right now, I want to train hard and qualify for the World Cross Country Championships. This is my first time winning gold and I am motivated to keep going. In Oregon, we had no gold in the race so I wanted to change that narrative in Cali,” Cherotich said.
The Form Three student at Kalyet Secondary School said Almayew was a great threat since she has a personal best time of 9:09.19. Cherotich has a personal best time of 9:12.04.
“The Ethiopian had a faster personal and I considered that as a threat. But before the race started, I decided to go for the win. I opened a huge gap to make it difficult for either of them to get to me,” she said.
Cherotich said her major weakness was in clearing the barriers but she said she had worked on it before heading out to Cali.
"I was poor at jumping the barriers and I trained extensively to perfect it," she said.
Cherotich narrated how she discovered her talent in the specialty and thanked her coach, Bernard Rono, for nurturing her talent.
She also attested that running with senior athletes at the Kip Keino Classic held in Nairobi on May 7 ignited the spark in her to stick to the water and barrier race.
It is at the Kip Keino that she clocked her 9:12.04 lifetime best.
“I started running in 2020 and I discovered I could do well in this race. My coach, Bernard Rono trained me well and perfected my skills,” she said.
“When I placed second at the Kip Keino Classic, I knew that steeplechase was made for me. One day, I want to run like Beatrice Chepkoech and break the world record.”